Jun 15

Employers should embrace the 2018 World Cup…..!

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Employers should embrace the 2018 World Cup…….!

The 2018 World Cup gets underway this week and should be an opportunity to generate a good feeling in the workplace and boost staff morale, wellbeing and productivity rather than focussing on how to prevent ‘sickies!’

There are 63 matches across the tournament, and whilst the first of the England games take place outside of the ‘traditional’ working day of nine-to-five and at weekends, fans that support different teams may of course be keen to see their own matches which may take place during work time.

In addition, England fans may want to watch other big games which may also be played during the working day.

Equally, as the games take place in different Russian time zones, there is a mixture of starting times. Weekend and shift workers may also be on the roster when their team’s game is being shown.

England’s games in the first stage of 2018 World Cup are as follows:

Monday 18th June England v Tunisia
Thursday 28th June England v Belgium
Sunday 24th June England v Panama

Kick-off time for both weekday games is 7pm.

The concern is that staff sick days and unscheduled absences are likely to rise on or around these days, as staff take their seats in front of the TV to watch England play live.

The best employers will be those that take a proactive approach to these events as follows:

· Create temporary flexible working for the duration of the tournament
· Allow late starting or early finishing on match days
· Stage World Cup events in the office by setting up screens to show the matches
· Run a sweepstake to ensure all staff feel involved
· Plan in advance how to respond to multiple and last minute holiday requests!
· Allow employees to watch lunch time matches and then stay late to make up time
· Allow employees to listen or watch games online on work devices
· Permit the streaming of games on employees’ own mobile devices

If you have a diverse workforce, make sure any temporary flexible arrangements are also available to them to watch their own national team play in the World Cup.

Taking positive steps to manage the workplace impact of the World Cup can have a beneficial effect on employee relations. As well as allowing staff to watch matches, employers could:

· put up special decorations in the office, such as flags of the countries involved;
· relax dress codes, including allowing football shirts to be worn; and
· provide refreshments during games.

Giving staff the opportunity to watch or celebrate major events is a really great way of engaging and motivating the whole team!!